For many people, university might be the first time they are living away from their families and from their homes. Adjusting to life away from home can be tough, so many college students experience homesickness throughout their college careers.
Those types of negative feelings are even more amplified by the coronavirus pandemic and the way it has been changing our way of life.
With this pandemic keeping everyone indoors, people spend hours or days confined within four walls, and that can be very detrimental to their mental health.
For many Eastern students, one way to remain happy and comfortable when spending time inside their rooms is decorating them with items that remind them of home, make them feel comfortable, and showcase their personality.
Gracie Woods, a sophomore art education major, likes to decorate her room with objects that really help her make that room her own. Those items help her room feel like a safe and homey place that she can relax in.
The walls of her bedroom are covered in various posters and artworks. She also has pictures of her friends and family, plants, and blankets, which are all items that bring her joy and comfort.
“Making my room my own is very beneficial for my overall comfort and experience with living in the dorms. After a long day of classes, it makes the day a lot easier if you have a comfortable place to come home to,” Woods said.
Maddie Havens, senior English student, has collected various decorations over the course of a couple years to help bring her room to life and make it an unique space.
Her favorite colors are green and gray, so those colors are showcased in various items in her room, including her bedding. Her bedroom also contains a colorful tapestry, string lights decorated with postcards from her semester abroad, posters of her favorite K-pop groups, and pictures of her loved ones.
“The room was plain and ugly when I first moved in. Now that I’ve decorated it, it’s a space that I feel pride in,” Havens said. “The way that I’ve set it up helps me sleep well, study well, and generally thrive better than in any other room I’ve had.”
Sergio Castro, a freshman physical education major, decorated his room with items that show his past achievements, such as medals he has won when competing in track. He also decorated the walls of his room with colorful LED lights and pictures of his friends and family.
“The decorations are important to me because it gives me happiness in seeing my room shine with bright colors,” Castro said.
For Castro, the way he decorated his room achieves many purposes. The items in his room give him confidence and motivation to complete his every-day activities, such as prepare for virtual meetings. Many items also represent his post-college career and things he wants to achieve in the future.
Jahlani Grant, a freshman sociology student, decorated her room with pictures of her friends and family and items that represent her culture. She also brought her instruments from back home because she is very passionate about music.
For Grant, it was important for her room to have those decorations because transitioning to college was tough for her. Her family decided to help make the transition easier by making her room as cozy and welcoming as possible, leaving items that will remind her of them.
“[Having those decorations] is important to me because it is my first time alone and the change was very drastic. I was extremely homesick but looking through my room and seeing what my family brought definitely made me feel better,” Grant said.
Grant advises students to bring to college whatever makes them feel comfortable in their own room.
“Nothing is too extra or too little,” she said. “Just make your room a reflection of who you are.”
Kyara Morales-Rodriguez can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]